Posted by: woodbeecarver   in Carving Projects


The Wood Bee Carver is a knife carver who carves from a block of wood by shaping it from its squared corners into the basic form of the subject being carved creating a rough out design that is completed in the final detailing process.  Often the same subject is carved in progressive versions of the original by using the same process from a block of wood carved to basic form and then refined in the detailing process. The process thus makes each version of new carving rather than a duplicated copy because the same process from beginning to end is the same with only minor changes in the overall design.  Even though Uncle Sam has been carved before, each new version is unique in and of itself.

The process begins by carving the head covering first followed by carving the head as going up into the head covering.  Once the head portion is carved to basic form the next step is the divide what the shoulder down to the bottom of the feet into thirds of the Rule of Three of Body Proportions ~ Shoulder to Waist; Waist to Mid Knees; Mid Knees to Bottom of Feet.  These divisions are indicated by drawing horizontal lines around the block of wood at these three junctions.  Next comes drawing in the body parts and outfit details on all four sides of the block to guide the opening up shaping process of the basic form of the subject.  After the basic form has been carved the next step is the detail areas of the subject can be carved to refine towards the final look. The detailing process is to blend from one area to another so that it all comes together as a smooth transition over the entire carving.  The Rule of Thumb to follow is ninety present of the process is carving the basic form first and then ten present of detail carving completes the process.  Jumping ahead to carve in details before there is a good foundation of the basic form is to spoil the intended look.

The first series of photos below are of the process of carving to basic form with the second series of photos are of the process of carving the details. One of the innovative changes in this version of Uncle Sam is the hair being longer and drawn into a pig tail with a bow. Each carving of any one subject will always have a fresh interpretation in appearance because it is a fresh carving of an old subject, making each new version a stand on its own alone.




The painting (coloration) process of this carving used artist oil paint thinned with boiled linseed oil. A base coat of Raw Sienna and linseed oil is applied to the entire carving which is then blotted to remove the excess.  Artist oil paint of chosen colors thinned with boiled linseed oil are applied to the various areas on top of the base coat. This coloration process is more a “stain” so that the grain of the wood shows through the coloration. Face and hands receive only the base coat in this style of coloring to indicate that this subject is carved of wood rather than being ceramic. The Raw Sienna base coat gives an antiquing effect from inside out as the secondary colors are added on top of the base coat.  After few days drying time, an application of Deft, a brushing lacquer is applied as a protective coating.




This entry was posted on Saturday, July 29th, 2023 at 10:54 am and is filed under Carving Projects. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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